Every time music comes up when I’m having a conversation with someone, I always make sure to casually let them know that I listen to rap. They always raise their eyebrow at me, because what could a fifteen year old white girl know about rap? “Who’s your favorite rapper?” they ask. Still unsure of how I would know shit about that music gender. “Nicki Minaj.” I reply with my head held high. “Oh.” They say letting out a sight of relief, “I thought you meant real rap.” They continue, laughing softly at my face. I am at a point of my life where I get so tired of explaining to people that Nicki has songs where she hardcore raps, she isn’t a bubblegum pop singer. But I have realized that there’s no point, because those people have only heard of “Starships” and “Va Va Voom”. So here’s a list to let people know that Nicki Minaj is as real as it gets.
(P.S. this list only contains singles that haven’t gotten enough recognition and that I feel showcase Nicki’s talent.)
5) Did It On ‘Em
Did It On ‘Em is one of Nicki’s lowest selling singles. Her rap verses are some of the most hardcore rap verses I’ve ever heard and let me remind you that I listen to Jay Z, Kanye West and Eminem so yeah, I know about rap music. The beat is one of the best beats Nicki has ever rapped on and the courses are also flawless and addictive. She doesn’t sing on the courses so can y’all call it a real rap record now? I don’t know what is making this song that much different than Kanye West’s POWER. I’m not saying it’s better, but you should respect both of them equally.
4) Pills N Potions
Pills N Potions is a slower record as well as the leading single from her latest album to date, The Pinkprint. It also shows us a sweeter side of Nicki letting her man know that even though she’s pissed at him she still loves him. She goes on to say that people will love her and support her when it’s beneficial, showing us a down side to her fame and saying that the people that used to hate her and make her life hard are now crawling back to her just because she’s famous. In the course she sings about over dosing because of how hard life has become for her and she ends it with a sweet message saying “In due time, we’ll be fine.” letting her self and the listener know that even though things get hard we can get though anything. Even though the song starts out pretty dark it ends on a positive note and don’t get me started on how good the verses and the beat is. Wait what was that? Nicki Minaj only sings about butts and sex? Yeah, okay.
3) Feeling Myself (ft. Beyonce)
(the music video for this song is available on Tidal)
Feeling Myself includes a few of Nicki’s best rap verses reminding people she is the queen of rap and nobody can take her down. The song is not about masturbation even though it does have a few playful references to it in the first verse. On the second one Nicki straight out talk about a sexual act where she is in control by telling the male what to do. Beyonce also slays her parts by joking about how everyone stopped everything they were doing when her visual album dropped in 2013. So what do we have? Good beat? Check. Good verses? Check. Good feature? Double check (it’s Queen Bey for God’s shake!). So, tell me again, who isn’t a real rapper?
2) Lookin’ Ass
Okay, not only does she spit mad fire on the verses of this song but she calls out all the sexist men and rappers in the game. Talking about how they keep looking at her ass and expecting her to lie for them. She talks about how she’s made it big in the business and how she has her own money and is not waiting for a man to pay her bills. She puts female empowerment back on the map by proving superiority to all the men who are objectifying women. And oh, did I mention that she spits mad fire on the verses?
“They never thank me for opening doors, but they didn’t even thank Jesus when he died on a cross.” Nicki says when she starts off the song. She has opened doors for women in this industry but they keep trying to bring her down with out showing any gracefulness. She talks about how her career is similar to Jay Z’s by saying that it has been “the Pinkprint”, a play off on his album “The Blueprint”. In the first verse she sounds worried and feeling like a sellout because of the commercial she’s in. The course starts by her saying that she feels free to express herself the way she wants, music is her “freedom”. She later goes on to call out the angry audiences by saying, “Why they mad? You should see them.” All she meant was good with her music and now all these people are attacking her out of nowhere.
“Burn an L, coz it’s crazy in here.” Nicki smokes a joint to escape the harsh reality she is thrown in. Towards the end of the song Nicki talks to her self in the mirror asking “what you hiding from?” Why should she be scared of the critics? Why should she be holding her self back? Freedom is one of the most iconic rap records, no doubt. It captures the feeling of being hated for speaking your mind, do y’all still feel like hating on her now?
Okay, so that’s all for that list. Of course there are much better records than the ones I chose in Nicki’s albums but just so all you smart asses don’t say, “so do we have to buy her albums to discover her true talent?” I made this list only out of singles. All you have to do is listen, put all your judgment aside for once and listen.
Thank you for reading, bye 🙂